Aquatic centre campaign
Constituents in the Manning area asked me to look into the lack of aquatic facilities in the City of South Perth in 2011.
I began investigating the issue and have since conducted a community survey, a public meeting and many other meetings with sports and community groups, all of which have confirmed a strong community demand and need for an aquatic centre in the region.
The City of South Perth is a fast growing area with many young families and also a very large numbers of students attending nearby Curtin University (WA’s largest university).
There are many seniors that value hydrotherapy facilities but are less mobile and able to travel to other centres in Perth.
Following consultation, we identified the George Burnett Leisure Centre in Karawara as a potential site for a new aquatic centre development, which is located on Manning Road next to Waterford Plaza and Curtin University.
To progress the matter further I secured a Coalition Government-funded $45,000 feasibility study as a 2013 election commitment to investigate the potential for an aquatic centre at this site.
This report was successfully completed in July 2015 and provides a blueprint for the new aquatic centre. It can be accessed here: http://www.southperth.wa.gov.au/News-and-Events/News/2015/June/Aquatic-Centre-Feasibility-Study-Report
Curtin University is particularly supportive and keen to partner with any future aquatic development for the benefit of their 30,000 students, which currently do not have access to aquatic facilities at Curtin. There is potential to make a new centre a world class facility for research by customising facilities that can be used by sports science-related courses at the university.
Water Polo WA has expressed interest in making a centre at the George Burnett location their new Headquarters in WA and there is also an organised Facebook group ‘support the South Perth aquatic centre’ run by a local resident.
There are opportunities to seek federal funding for the construction of aquatic centres and there have been 9 centres funded in the past 2 years across Australia through the federally-funded National Stronger Regions Fund.
The matter now rests with City of South Perth councillors who must decide whether to apply for federal funding to construct an aquatic centre.